Category Archives: Better Man

The Fallacy of Talent

tal·ent

noun
1. a special natural ability or aptitude: a talent for drawing.
2. a capacity for achievement or success; ability: young men of talent.

Talent is one of those most misleading words in the World today, and typifies Western society’s obsession with doing everything quickly. Talent, as per the definition above, implies that a person is somehow gifted in a certain field, which thus leads to great success. We can see this all through our popular culture – Harry Potter finds out he has a talent for magic despite being raised as a muggle, in the Matrix Morpheus tells Neo “don’t think you can, know you can” and that is basically all he needs to turn into a demigod. We are basically told repeatedly by movies and television that we simply have to discover our talent and we are going to be awesome at it.
This flies completely in the face of reality where hard work and dedication are what make you good at anything, not this mysterious thing called “talent”. If The Karate Kid was actually realistic, Daniel (and most likely Mr Miyagi too) would have gotten his ass kicked by the Cobra Kai at the tournament rather than winning with that ridiculous crane kick. To be honest I think the term talent is actually somewhat insulting, because it implies that the person was somehow gifted that trait by god or whatever deity you follow, rather than having earned them. I want to give three examples as to why talent is an inappropriate term. Continue reading

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Better Man in a Month Day 9 – Don’t swear for a day

Swearing is one of those things we heard on tv or at the movies when we were kids, or we’d occasionally hear adults or even naughty kids do it. We all looked forward to the day we were old enough and we could do it too, thinking it would make us cooler and more tough. Unfortunately, there is really nothing that great about swearing. Sure, it can be good to do when you kick your toe or run into something just to get that bit of anger off your chest, but the way it is used today is just too much. People swear mid sentence, they use it as an emphasis, hell I’ve even heard it take the place of a comma on occasions. The fact is, however, in any but the most casual settings, swearing is frowned upon, and it should be. Today’s challenge is to go for 24 hours without uttering a swear word. Continue reading

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Better Man in a Month Day 8 – Don’t complain

For the first few days of this week, we are going to run with a bit of a theme – positivity. We already started yesterday by preparing ourselves for the week ahead in order to step into work today clean and confident. So for today we are going to continue that positive feeling with the next challenge. Today you are not going to complain. At all. We complain a lot in Western society, far too much considering what circumstances most of the world live in. The worst thing is, we complain about the little things – an extra couple of minutes wait in line at the supermarket, someone saying something we didn’t like, hell we complain when our favourite tv show doesn’t start on time.

So today, rather than whining to people about insignificant problems, you’re going to thank God, the universe, Allah, whatever you believe in that you’re alive, healthy and have a whole lot of things that most people in the world don’t. It’s all about gratitude today people, be thankful and happy for what you have in life and forget about all the insignificant things that make very little difference to your life. One day without complaining, one day trying to be as positive as possible. Give it a try.

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Better Man in a Month Day 7 – Personal Grooming

Personal grooming - nope, this is NOT what I mean

Well it’s Sunday, so rather than give you a big challenge to do today is going to be something really simple that will hopefully set you up for a great week at work. Guys can be pretty sloppy with their presentation in general and in their personal grooming especially because a lot of the time they don’t realise just how great an impression it makes. Now, when I say personal grooming I’m not talking about shaving your chest, waxing your legs or anything ridiculous like that. We’re talking just the basics here, which no one has an excuse not to take care of. The first reason personal grooming is important is because it shows you pay attention to detail and look well put together – very important for making a good impression at work. Secondly, while women do prefer masculine men, they also don’t necessarily like them to be filthy and unkempt. Continue reading

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Better Man in a Month Day 6 – Survivalism

In the last year, we have seen an unprecedented series of natural disasters. There have been severe floods, tsunami, earthquakes and nuclear reactor problems.Today we are tackling the topic of survivalism, and how as a man it is your job to start thinking about it and forumulating a plan. Don’t worry, we are going to make this fun. To begin with, you are going to rent the movie 28 Days Later and you are going to honestly ask yourself how well you’d do if you were one of the characters in the movie. What does 28 Days Later have to do with any of this? Well, zombies and/or viruses symbolise the end of civilisation as we know it, it is basically an apocalyptic event. For those people in Fukushima, it may as well have been exactly the same thing. Everything is rubble, food and water is going to be scarce, you don’t know where you are and you don’t know when help is coming. How are you going to handle this as a man? Do you have any idea of the best course of action, or are you just going to freak out and hope for the best? No, you want to be prepared. You want the confidence to say that when disaster strikes, you are going to go down swinging if you go down at all. Continue reading

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Better Man in a Month Day 5 – Eat or drink something you consider “exotic”

Being that it’s Friday and everyone probably has better things to do than read a length post, I’m going to make this one really quick and easy. Tonight, or this weekend, eat something that you normally shy away from. So many people I know will only eat what they’ve always eaten, they won’t even try a new sauce on their steak because they like mushroom sauce for instance. Same with drinking – a lot of guys will only drink beer and frown on everything else. Seriously, this weekend, broaden your horizons and your palate by trying something new. I’m not saying you have to eat something you’d normally consider extreme, but branch out a bit. If you always go out for Chinese, try Vietnamese or Thai instead. If you always eat chicken or steak, give duck a shot. Take a walk on the wild side, you’ll probably find that you really like what you try and it opens the floodgates of curiosity for you.

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Better Man in a Month Day 4 – Fast for 24 hours

Today’s challenge might scare you a little bit, it might cause you to think I am a complete whacko, or it may pique your curiosity. The purpose of this challenge is for a variety of reasons, let’s have a quick overview. After doing this, you should experience a number of benefits, such as: changing your relationship with food, learning you have more willpower than you think you do, improving your health and most importantly, putting yourself through a little hardship. Intermittent Fasting (or IM for short) is gaining quite a following in certain health circles as a way of managing weight loss, keeping cholesterol and triglycerides down and giving the digestive system a break. Let’s go into some greater detail just in case you are skeptical (which you ALWAYS should be when it comes to health advice). Continue reading

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